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A not so ‘Free Day’ . . .

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POSTED January 22, 2016 12:50 a.m.

On Tuesday, I spent what friend Vic Morito likes to call a “Free Day”. A “Free Day” entails waking up in bed at around noon – and then frittering the day away – without ever leaving the house. These completely non-productive days, are just what every person pursuing a comedy career, got into comedy for. The ability to rationalize a day of watching Die Hard for the 16th time, or thumbing through a Time Life book about sharks I’ve had since I was five. But all this is done under the guise of “working on my craft” or “working on my art”...I’ve never really understood that saying when it comes comedy. There are times when I’ve seen a seasoned comic, go to a joke of the lowest common denominator – if they felt they were losing the crowd. So let’s hold off on calling it an art or craft.
But the Free Day always has a way of coming up and biting you right in your behind. It had been storming the night before — nothing my trusty floor heater couldn’t fix. I had awoken at 3 a.m. to the overheated room and crusted eyes that only a 1970s floor heater can provide. Remember the beauty of those little wires glowing red hot? Knowing that if it tips over, you’d be lighting Chicago on fire. I did what most single men half asleep do in this spot. I opened the window next to my bed – even put my foot on the window sill. Ahhh, the perfect mix of cold and hot. ZZZzzz.
Only to wake freezing several hours later, in a room that smelled like burned carpet! Seems my deaf puppy had decided to investigate the heater during the night. She flopped face down on the new throw carpet, leaving grill marks that would make Burger King proud.
And why is my foot all wet?!
Of course, I’d removed the screen from the window a few days earlier. Why you may ask? I have trained my pup to use that specific window when she needs to pee at night. (or she has trained me) It’s a low lying window  one that works perfect for her weak bladder, and my laziness. She hops out to the lawn, and springs back through the window. Except on this night, the only thing that had hopped out the window was my foot, and was being soaked by the storm. It’s usually during these moments that I call it a Free Day.
I scuttled around the room trying to locate my cell – when fear struck. I usually keep my phone on the window sill. And there it was — laying in the planter box below my bedroom window, soaking wet from the night before.
Why are all cell phones not waterproof at this point?!!
It was showing no signs of life. I expected a phone doctor to open my bedroom door, and relay the bad news that it was gone forever. I rushed it to the emergency room, which is the Metro phone dealer in the area. This is basically the same as being at the county hospital. It consists of a bunch of Metro users that have made horrible life decisions, just trying to get their phone to the front counter. I took a seat next to a couple of 22-year-old hipster dudes, deep in throws of a Star Wars conversation.
There is something about this generation that drives me insane. I can handle listening to a full nerd out, and the delicate discussion about the new Star Wars characters. But these obviously enhanced gentlemen, took to comparing the death of Han-Solo, (Sorry, If I spoiled that as a real Star Wars fan would’ve already seen it), to the assassination of John F. Kennedy?!!
And let’s be clear, It wasn’t that they were having a loud discussion about something that Cheech and Chong would find stupid. But the fact that it didn’t take 20 seconds for one of them to use that word.....
Conspiracy.
If I hear another 22-year-old explain how the Kennedy Assassination or 9/11 were conspiracies, I’m gonna fly my fist into the grassy knoll of their skinny jeans. In my line of work, (I’m referring to comedy, not milking cows), you’d be amazed at the ridiculous conversations you get within earshot of in a comedy club green room.
“The government knew about ISIS in WWII”, or “If you watch the Nicolas Cage movie National Treasure you’ll see the systematic breakdown of Ameri.......” OH SHUT-UP! There is something to be said for keeping your thoughts to yourself in mixed company. The “better to be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt” adage comes to mind. My friend Kevin Albritton spoke the one truth about his generation (the current 20-30 clan) – The Hipster generation — that I concur with, “I’m surrounded by a bunch of wussies and conspiracy theorists in beanie caps, and we seem proud of it for some reason.”
One hipster cited that his father had “ties”, and assured him that JFK was an inside job. ??? I know his dad. He’s 2 years older than me! That means his dad was born 8 years after it happened. Yet, this 22-year-old spoke like he was there in Dallas that day.
I hate when I hear someone speak about the rhythm and nature of a certain time period that they weren’t even alive for. It’s much like when I hear a 25-year-old Niner fan talk about “their 5 rings”...You weren’t alive to claim the first 4 – and were 3 years old during the last one – therefore you have no rings!.. but I digress.
Slowly the conversation turned to chemicals in food, and how the government is trying to kill people that way. Vegans and GMOists love to force their folly upon others. They tried to implement a law a few years back requiring any food non-organic, to label itself as such. Here’s an idea for all those field mice: If it isn’t labeled “organic”, don’t buy it. Doesn’t that cover the problem?
 In reality I think most Vegans and GMOists just want some daily applause and recognition for all that they contribute to society. They should be rewarded with their own special grocery store that caters to – oh wait, they already have that, never mind.
 “Please feel free to go about your life as you wish, without the compulsion to let others know, you feel your life is in fact better than theirs” — Lloyd Barbasol
  I was within seconds of losing my mind. One of the cool cats leaned over, “What happened to your phone?” I didn’t feel like going over the exact cause, just said “It got all wet...Why don’t they just make these damn things waterproof?!”
The Vegan looked at me, as if I was the saddest old man on Earth —  “C’mon man, that’s the way they keep you having to buy new phones. It’s all a conspiracy...”
 I had no idea. Some Free Day. A new phone ran me $135.
Comedy Show at MRPS on Jan. 30: National Headliner Robert Duchaine makes his way to Manteca at 7 o’ clock. His sarcastic social commentary pokes fun at a myriad of topics including race, religion, and relationships.
Now an established national touring headliner, Robert performs regularly in Las Vegas show rooms, colleges, comedy clubs and concert venues. Duchaine is also involved in avant-garde theater and independent film. Robert’s unique perspective fuels an act that pushes the envelope. Duchaine is candid, entertaining, and always hilarious!
Tickets are $10, and are available at the door – or by calling Chris Teicheira (209) 622-5745

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